RE: Skills vs education (was: Senior technical writer?)

Subject: RE: Skills vs education (was: Senior technical writer?)
From: eric -dot- dunn -at- ca -dot- transport -dot- bombardier -dot- com
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Date: Tue, 3 Oct 2006 17:48:11 -0400

This discussion really is OT and I think I'm starting to forget the point.

"Combs, Richard" <richard -dot- combs -at- Polycom -dot- com> wrote on 10/03/2006 04:00:47
> Doctors and lawyers must have 7 years of college before they begin their
> "apprenticeship, other OTJ training, and continued learning/study."
> Engineers can do so after 4.

This argument is descending into stupidity and minutia. So doctors have
extra years of Med School after college/university. Fine. How does all
this bickering over specifics change my points that engineering has as
much of a controlled atmosphere and you DO NOT become a professional
"simply" by graduating B.Eng.?

Wasn't this discussion started with:

Kevin wrote on 10/02/2006 11:31:25 AM:
> Engineers can become pros with only an engineering
> undergrad degree

Engineers just hit "residency" a few years ahead of doctors. Doesn't
change my point that you're not a Professional Engineer until you've done
your internship and passed the Professional order exams. So I fail to
understand the relevance of proving more years of education or splitting
the professions. What was the point? How does it change the point of my
side comment that you aren't and can't be "pro" just by graduating B.Eng?

And then:
> Only the engineers
> get their profession-specific academic training as
> undergrads.

Which is patently and unarguably false. Training of engineers at the
B.Eng. level is ABSOLUTELY no more "profession-specific " than B.Sci
Pre-med. An engineer can get an engineering related job with a B.Eng. Just
as a med student could undoubtedly get a medicine related job with
pre-med. But for either to gain the status of "Professional" or to
specialise requires much further study.

I didn't even disagree with Kevin's post. Only took issue with that one
small quoted portion. Others seemed more intent on proving what graduating
as B.Eng or Pre-med means. Funny that as an Engineering graduate I'm
getting the feeling that I'm being told I don't understand the reality of
the 2 years of college and four years of university that I went through.
Nor the additional requirements it would take to become recognised as a
professional in an Engineering field. I think that being told that "I'm
not getting it" by people who are equally "not getting" my point is
starting to get to me. It is also for this reason I made the side thread
to clarify the difference between a Professional Engineer and a profession
that appropriates the title of engineer.

Otherwise I think the thread demonstrates very well the evils of
over-education and certification. The debate is no where near discussing
actual skills and competencies but mired in an all out simplistic barrage
of "more years in school is better" and constitutes "profession specific"
academic learning or not. IMO, the affliction of both Doctors, Engineers,
and some other "certifiable" professions is that many of them are like
bricklayers who can detail the composition and properties of bricks and
mortar in excruciating detail but couldn't build a wall properly if their
life depended on it.

Eric L. Dunn
Senior Technical Writer


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RE: Skills vs education (was: Senior technical writer?): From: Combs, Richard

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